Eran Elhaik

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Eran Elhaik
ResidenceSheffield, United Kingdom
NationalityIsraeli and American
Alma materUniversity of Houston
Scientific career
FieldsGenetics, bioinformatics, Population genetics
InstitutionsJohns Hopkins University, University of Sheffield
Doctoral advisorDan Graur

Eran Elhaik (born 1980 in Israel) is an Israeli-American geneticist and bioinformatician. His research uses computational, statistical, epidemiological and mathematical approaches to fields such as complex disorders, population genetics, personalised medicine, molecular evolution, genomics, paleogenomics and epigenetics.


After completing undergraduate studies in Israel, he obtained a PhD in molecular evolution under the supervision of Dan Graur at the University of Houston in 2009, followed by postdoctoral research fellowships at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and School of Public Health. Since 2014 he works at the University of Sheffield Department of Animal and Plant Sciences.[1]


In the field of molecular evolution, Elhaik worked on the compositional domain model that describes the compositional organization of animal genomes.[2]

In the field of complex disorders, he proposed that the allostatic load theory could be used to explain bipolar disorder [3] and Sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS).[4] According to this theory, the accumulation of perinatal and prenatal stressors has neurotoxic effects with consequences to one's health.

In the field of genetics, Elhaik was part of the team that designed the GenoChip microarray for the Genographic Project and their online tests.[5] He also contributed to the development of algorithms for data compression.[6]

In the field of population genetics, Elhaik has published papers analyzing the ancestries of European Jews[7][8][9] and Druze,[10][11] including work related to the Khazar hypothesis of Ashkenazi ancestry, a contentious subject that has received media attention.[12] Elhaik argues for a non-Levantine origin of the Ashkenazi[13] and favours the hypothesis that they are of mixed Irano-Turko-Slavic and southern European descent.[14]


  1. ^ "Dr Eran Elhaik". University of Sheffield.
  2. ^ Elhaik, Eran; Graur, Dan; Josić, Krešimir; Landan, Giddy (2010). "Identifying compositionally homogeneous and nonhomogeneous domains within the human genome using a novel segmentation algorithm". Nucleic Acids Research. 38 (15): e158. doi:10.1093/nar/gkq532. PMC 2926622. PMID 20571085.
  3. ^ Elhaik, Eran; Zandi, Peter (2015). "Dysregulation of the NF-κB pathway as a potential inducer of bipolar disorder". Journal of Psychiatric Research. 70: 18–27. doi:10.1016/j.jpsychires.2015.08.009. PMID 26424419.
  4. ^ Elhaik, Eran (2016). ""A 'Wear and Tear' Hypothesis to Explain Sudden Infant Death Syndrome"". frontiers in Neurology. 7: 1–12. doi:10.3389/fneur.2016.00180.
  5. ^
  6. ^ Chanda, P; Elhaik, E; Bader, JS (27 July 2012). "HapZipper: sharing HapMap populations just got easier" (PDF). Nucleic Acids Research. 40 (20): e159. doi:10.1093/nar/gks709. PMC 3488212. PMID 22844100.
  7. ^ Elhaik, E (1 January 2013). "The missing link of Jewish European ancestry: Contrasting the Rhineland and the Khazarian hypotheses". Genome Biology and Evolution. 5 (1): 61–74. doi:10.1093/gbe/evs119. PMC 3595026. PMID 23241444.
  8. ^ Das, R (19 April 2016). "Localizing Ashkenazic Jews to Primeval Villages in the Ancient Iranian Lands of Ashkenaz". Genome Biology and Evolution. 8 (7): 1132–49. doi:10.1093/gbe/evw046. PMC 4860683. PMID 26941229.
  9. ^ Elhaik, E (5 August 2016). "In search of the judische Typus: a proposed benchmark to test the genetic basis of Jewishness challenges notions of "Jewish biomarkers"". frontiers in Genetics. 7 (141). doi:10.3389/fgene.2016.00141. PMC 4974603. PMID 27547215.
  10. ^ Elhaik, E (1 January 2013). "The missing link of Jewish European ancestry: Contrasting the Rhineland and the Khazarian hypotheses". Genome Biology and Evolution. 5 (1): 61–74. doi:10.1093/gbe/evs119. PMC 3595026. PMID 23241444.
  11. ^ Marshall, S (16 November 2016). "Reconstructing Druze population history". Scientific Reports. 6 (35837). doi:10.1038/srep35837. PMC 5111078. PMID 27848937.
  12. ^ Keys, David (20 April 2016). "Scientists reveal Jewish history's forgotten Turkish roots". The Independent.
  13. ^ Editorial: Population Genetics of Worldwide Jewish People, Frontiers in Genetics 28 July 2017
  14. ^ Ranajit Das, Paul Wexler, Mehdi Pirooznia and Eran Elhaik, 'The Origins of Ashkenaz, Ashkenazic Jews, and Yiddish,'Frontiers in Genetics 21 June 2017